Special Programs

MISSION - DeSoto ISD is preserving educational excellence by closing the achievement gap one child at a time. Special Programs ensure students will learn through authentic, creative, research-based, differentiated instruction that is properly aligned to meet their individual needs. Additionally, teachers will frequently monitor and assess student learning to provide the prescribed intervention and enrichment. As a professional learning community, teachers and leaders will continuously apply their knowledge and skills to impact the multifaceted needs of all student populations.

RESPONSIBILITIES -    The responsibilities of the Special Programs department are to ensure compliance of ESEA (formerly known as NCLB) and other State and Federal programs. Mandates are implemented to help erase barriers in learning. The Special Programs department provides supplemental resources with the goal of equalizing the playing field for all learners. Special Programs target areas such as deficits in language, reading, temporary/short-term disabilities, family hardships and transitions. In addition to serving students, this department also provides professional development training to increase the effectiveness of teachers and school leaders.

2014-15 Texas Performance Report

Best Practices for Serving  students of Special Populations:  

  • Data Driven Instruction
  • Brain-based Learning
  • Writing Workshops
  • Building Background Knowledge/Cultural Knowledge
  • Gradual Release Model
  • Tiered Interventions
  • Accommodations
  • Learning Styles/Multiple Intelligence
  • Differentiated Instruction
  • Cues, Questions, and Advance Organizers
  • Common Assessments
  • Individualized Instruction
  • Summarizing and Note-Taking
  • Student Centered-Cognitive-Social

District Systems of Supporting  students of Special Populations:

  • Language Instruction for Limited English Proficient Students ( Bilingual ESL /Title III)
  • Homeless Services
  • Dyslexia Program  ( Language Sciences )
  • Migrant services
  • Student Health and Fitness ( SHAC/FitnessGram )
  • Section 504
  • At-Risk Services (State Compensatory Education)
  • Federal Programs (Title I/ Title III)
  • Teacher & Principal Training & Recruitment (Title II)
  • Student Advanced Academics (GT (E.A.G.L.E.); Foreign Languages)
  • Early Literacy (Pre-K)

Recommended Readings for Sustaining growth and development in educating Special Populations

  • DuFour, Richard (2004) Whatever It Takes .
  • Dweck, C.S. (2006) Mindset .
  • Freeman, Y.S. (2009) Academic Language for English Language Learners and Struggling Readers: How to Help Students Succeed Across Content Areas .
  • Voltz, D.L. (2010) Connecting Teachers, Students, and Standards: Strategies for Success in Diverse and Inclusive Classrooms .
  • Wagner, Tony (2008) The Global Achievement Gap .
  • Weinfeld, Rich (2008) Special Needs Advocacy Resource Book .

Cheryl Ensley

Dr. Cheyrl Ensley
Executive Director of Federal Programs
200 E. Belt Line Rd., DeSoto, Texas 75115
Phone (972) 274-8212 X207
Fax (972) 274-8008
censley@desotoisd.org